History and Genealogy Online Resources

picture of a promotional calendar from the Tennessee Centennial exhibit
n 1897, Tennessee held a six-month celebration to mark the one-hundredth anniversary of statehood. The Tennessee Centennial Exposition was held in Nashville from May 1 until October 30, 1897, although the state’s actual centennial occurred in 1896.
Tennessee State Guard soldiers and young ladies eating together at Clarksville Armory
Brigadier General Jacob McGavock Dickinson, Jr.’s, Tennessee State Guard scrapbook comprises part of the Jacob McGavock Dickinson (1851-1928) Papers, 1812-1946.
​Hardy A. Mitchener, Jr. was a 2nd Lieutenant in the 509th Bombardment Squadron, 351st Bombardment Group, 8th Air Force, stationed in Polebrook, England, during World War II.
The Second Hermitage
TSLA has chosen to display portions of Bernhardt Wall’s Following Andrew Jackson, a limited edition pictorial biography containing etchings of scenes from Jackson’s life.
Without a doubt, the question, “where do humans come from?” was asked long before Charles Darwin published Origin of Species in 1859.
This three-volume set of Native-American portraits, entitled the History of The Indian Tribes of North America, with Biographical Sketches and Anecdotes of the Principal Chiefs, was assembled by Thomas L. McKenney and James Hall between 1836 and 1844.
The selection of materials in this collection portrays the lives of Tennessee’s average farmers in the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries.
The Beautiful Jim Key Collection (1885 – [1897-1907] – 1933) was donated to the Tennessee State Library and Archives by a relative of Dr. William Key, the self-trained, African-American veterinarian (and former slave) who partnered with promoter A. R.
In celebration of the bicentennial of Andrew Johnson’s birth and to commemorate his legacy, the images exhibited in this collection attempt to examine Johnson’s controversial political career and, at the same time, provide a glimpse at his personal life and humble beginnings.
For years, the Reconstruction era marked a tumultuous period in American and Tennessee history. Even before the formal process of Reconstruction began following the Civil War, steps were taken to address the rights of freed slaves and the readmission of Confederate states to the Union.
The items in this collection offer new perspectives into the lives of numerous non-combatants during the Civil War in Tennessee and throughout the southeast.
The “Civil War Visual Culture” unit of the Tennessee Virtual Archive showcases a wide variety of Civil War-related materials: sheet music covers, professionally designed lithographs, flags, hand-drawn letters, military drawings, and other images.
Intended for wide distribution, broadsides were traditionally used as a tool to disseminate information. Printed on large sheets of paper and sometimes rich in illustration, broadsides were posted on buildings or handed out to the general population.
As the nineteenth century drew to a close, the seeds of Southern mythology idealizing the service of the South’s aging Confederate veterans began to take root.
When the Civil War erupted, the new medium of photography had only been in existence for a little over twenty years.
This unit of the Tennessee Virtual Archive celebrates the tradition of quilting in Tennessee. The images displayed here, drawn from a variety of collections at the Tennessee State Library and Archives, portray both quilts themselves and Tennessee quilters engaging in their craft.
PFC Christopher D. Ammons searching canal for Viet Cong weapons
The Christopher D. Ammons collection documents his military service during two tours in Vietnam (1967-1970).
Alvin Cullum York (1887-1964) was one of the most decorated soldiers of the First World War. A recipient of the Medal of Honor and the French Legion of Honour, York is considered one of the greatest of Tennessee’s native sons.
Interior of Ryman taken from back of balcony, showing stage and seats
Perhaps no other single structure among Nashville’s buildings so epitomizes Music City’s spirit as the Ryman Auditorium. Recognized around the world as the “Mother Church of Country Music,” the Ryman is best known for having hosted the Grand Ole Opry, a weekly radio show, for decades.
Tennessee’s School for the Deaf, created by law in 1844, boasts a remarkably long and stable history of educating the state’s students with hearing disabilities.
Account document No. 10 for Captain J. E. Ray
The images found in this section have been gathered from various manuscript collections and offer a glimpse at the wide variety of material available at the Tennessee State Library and Archives that may be of interest to those researching Civil War history and genealogy.
This unit of the Tennessee Virtual Archive features images of the work and history of the Civilian Conservation Corps in Tennessee.
The 150th anniversary of the Civil War offers an extended opportunity for commemorating all aspects of a period that is central to American history. The stories of women in the Civil War are perhaps even more varied than those of the men who served on the front lines.
Cover of the Donelson journal from approximately 1779
From King George’s Proclamation of 1763 to the earliest purchase of land from Native Americans to the first Constitutions of the State of Tennessee, these are among the most important records from our past.
This collection highlights a time when the area that is now the state of Tennessee was land claimed by North Carolina. White settlers and their African-American slaves moved into Upper East Tennessee in the 1770s and established their own government, the Watauga Association.
This collection documents the careers in the United States Army Air Service during and after World War I of two brothers from Gallatin, Tennessee.
The Tennessee State Parks Folklife Project produced more than 500 hours of audio tape, 9600 slides, and 2200 black and white negatives, including duplicates of scores of historic photographs which had been cached for years by their owners.
Southern School News was published by the Southern Education Reporting Service (SERS) a fact-finding agency established by southern newspaper editors and educators with the aim of providing unbiased information to school administrators, public officials and interested lay citizens on developments in